Boro’s Gong Show… And Some Sit-Coms

SO, back from a few days away on international duty – representing Teesside in the European Hyperbole 2012 Championships qualifiers – and what’s happened? Diddlysquat. Nada. No bust-ups, cock-ups, transfer wrangles, come and get me pleas. Not even an injury. Yet.
Boro scored a gong show double and it never got a mention on Look Geordie, what with the Ticket To Ride marathon hitch-hiker and a Toon icon charity match hogging those precious screen minuts. Mogga was a shoo-in. Ten games unbeaten in a division where everyone else has lost at least two games is a massive achievement that we should be shouting about instead ofchuntering over a couple of tough draws. Matthew Bates deserved his award too: at the heart of a defence that has kept four clean sheets in the month again is a major achievement that should be trumpeted.
Next month let’s hope it is Scotty because that will mean we are rattling in goals again.
Meanwhile, to occupy the next few days – and by popular demand – until the MIllwall game let’s talk about the telly…

No, not X-Factor – that much loved British institution, the sit-com. Yes, the sit-com. Tales of the socially awkward caught in slapstick scenarios carreering toward an inevitable embarrassing finale; odd couples; clashes of class, culture and nationality; mistaken identities; pathos; irony; sublimated sexual tension; underdogs poking fun at pompous authority figures and caricatures of universal hate figures pilloried by proxy. That has Boro written all over it.
Well, according to the Untypical Boro twitterati anyway. Last week, after Dad’s Army creator and sit-com supremo David Croft popped his clogs, no doubt with unintentionally hilarious consequences, as a tribute I threw out a few Boro related script ideas. Others quickly joined in and soon a creative flurry of bite-sized plot pen-pictures were flying around. How we laughed.
Anyway, since then several people – those who only caught a few, or who can’t be bothered to trawl back through the retweets, or who don’t have the time to sit glued to a laptop late into the night – have asked me to collate and repeat them in a handy at a glance format. Always eager to please and quick to spot a way of filling some downtime bandwidth with vaguely Boro related product, here;s the highlights of the script conference.
These first few I have copyrighted. My lawyers are watching.
RISING STAMP: Can parmo loving Boro starlet Phil survive life in a Berwick Hills bedsit and win the battle of the bulge?
PORRIDGE: Banged up in boot camp, the Boro boys get up to pranks while avoiding the killjoy gaze of head warden Mr McStrachan.
VLAD’S ARMY: Slovak full back Kinder joins the TA, lost in translation khaki clad barrack hilarity ensues.
VICKERS OF DIBLEY: Ex-stopper Steve is mistakenly transferred to a rural church and joins a team managed by comedy cleric Dawn French.
TO THE MANNY BORN: Austrian tackling machine Mad Dog inherits stately home and moves in with Penelope Keith. Culture clash hilarity ensues.
SORRY! A side-splitting series of sheepish apologetic arm-raised antics with positionally challenged prankster Curtis Fleming.
MIND YOUR LANGUAGE: Shiny toothed former football boss in inappropriate heavily accented coaching class catchphrase chaos
PALLYMORY: Educational kids own goal fun with the injury prone lanky defender (also starring Archie as the inventor and PC Peake)
LOVE THY NEIGHBOUR: Bickering, insults and over the garden suburban sterotyping fun goes hilariously wrong, starring Bernie Slaven & Keith Lamb
THE THICK OF IT: Whitehall political machinations go awry when Windass, Gazza and Merson are mistakenly hired as government spin doctors.
And here’s the best of the rest….
Only Fuchs And Horses: Uwe and his champion thoroughbreds ride into town to do battle for promotion (@GraemeBandeira)
Friends: Best buds Neil Cox and Fab Ravenelli share a penthouse Grove Hill flat. Cereal-based hilarity ensues. (@ErimusPR)
Birds of a White Feather: Ravanelli and Beck spend their whole time bickering but love each other really (@markdesthompson)
On the Buses: Fun-loving Paul Gascoigne takes a gig with United Buses. Hilarity and bodywork damage ensues (@ErimusPR)
Two and a Half Men: Mido returns for pre-season in his usual shape & tries to play football. Hilarity ensues. (@dave_fender)
Heine-Hi: Dutch midfielder Otto’s post-Boro career winds down with a summer season at Maplin’s Saltburn holiday camp (@mattlegg24)
Uwe Been Framed: Fuchs tries to clear his name after being fitted up for a crime he didn’t commit. Or did he? (@shaun_jepson)
Last of the Summer Whine: Teenage-style tantrums by Yakubu. Series ends abruptly when the show’s star refuses to perform
Only When I Laugh Casualty comedy as stripey PJ’d trio Kevin T, Jason S and Andy H talk tactics from their hospital beds. (@UTB68)
I’m Sorry, I Haven’t a Clue: Jon Gittens and Phil Whelan reminice over hilarious costly defensive calamities. (@SimonBuckton)
The Green Ing: Midfielder and Jesus lookalike nurses the occasional injury in a hospital surrounded by wacky physios (@mcwd)
Two and a Half Mendieta: Gaizka and his son move in with Charlie Sheen. Madness, debauchery and hilarity ensue (@HardcoreTomas)
Mark Viduka’s Dragons’ Den: Millionaires pitch their contract ideas and the occasinal hitman picks the one with most money every week (@you_lying_get)
Family Guy: A hapless Scotsman is puzzled by the lack of married men in the squad, hasty replacements are found, hilarity ensues! (@steviebowerman)
Kinder Surprise.: Vladimir Kinder plays pranks on unsuspecting public (@You_lying_get)
Who’s Line is it Anyway? : Wolfman strays forward again as linesman improvises a raised flag for the 10th time in 45 minutes (@Disco4B)
Some Mothers Do ‘Ave ‘Emerson : Follow the Brazilian’s soulglow adventures in the Bongo and Noforesmby tute (@Capio78)
Rav C Nesbitt: An abrasive alcoholic Fabrizio Ravanelli takes to the streets of Govan in a string vest with a crate of Special Brew (@GaryMartin84)
The League of Gentleman George:: Cultured Former Boro skipper George Hardwick joins the inhabitants of a dark northern community. (@dave_fender)
Mannion About the House.: The Golden Boy spends his days getting under “the wife’s” feet after retirement. (@AndrewHaslam79)
How I met your Mogga : The story about a club’s long search for the right manager. (@havrejesp)
Jan Aage Being Served.: A shortage of supply to the striker department causes difficulties in tonight’s episode. (@pmj174)
Two Pints of Lager And Packet of Crisps: Brazilian international’s half-time snack and pep talk leads to hilarious result (@jrduffers)
Curb Your Enthusiasm: Joe Bennett tries his best to last 90 minutes without a second yellow card (@M_Rea)
My Name Is Euell: Jason attempts to right wrongs of the past with pedestrian forward play. (@ErimusPR)
Citizen Schteve: After leading the PRT (remember that?) to domestic glory, our hero goes on tour of Europe (@mikecail)
Curb Your Enthusiasm : Chuntering doom-mongers find unbridled misery in team’s unbeaten start. (@Philmoreorless)
Not Going Out: Italian keeps finding ways to stop BORO losing to our continental cousins. Pandemonium ensues. (@Disco4B)
Terry & Juno : TC and TLF in time-travelling swapping of tricky tips behind the cover of a pair of floral curtains (@DaveJohnson1969)
Absolutely Fabiolus:: Midfield face pusher Fabio Rochemback gets into a series of five yard pass related mishaps (@TobyHiggins)
Cheers: Bryan Robson becomes Boro manager (@ErimusPR)
Alf Common As Muck : Ffollow Alf as he squanders his fortune on manure (@Dendog_UK)
Men Behaving Badly: Numerous episodes all unavailable for broadcast (@Captain5MFC)
Waiting For Todd : Set 40 years in the future, Andy get’s up to all manner of scrapes in an old folks home. (@leejtees)
Two And A Half Midget Gems: Set in 1995, a steady relationship is threatened by an exotic arrival… (@mikecail)
Red Dwarf : Oh smeg! Strach attempts to return to the Prem, but instead is left adrift light years away with only Kris Boyd for company (@ErimusPR)
Bairds Of A Feather: Two sisters lead very different lives – until their their husbands are sent prison (@shaunwilson71)
Mac Adder: Ginger-haired manager’s fiendish plot to only sign players over the age of 30. And Yakubu. (@AndrewHaslam79)
The Mighty Huth: Injury prone defender runs Germanic shop with help from Bolo…. I got a bad feeling about this! (@steviebowerman)
Feel free to add your own….


43 thoughts on “Boro’s Gong Show… And Some Sit-Coms

  1. It’s late at night and I have a lot to do tomorrow, so an early start is needed. Therefore a detailed analysis of your programme ideas will have to wait.
    More pressing is the need to comment on news that “diddlysquat, nada…not even an injury…” has happened in this international football break.
    Now come on, Vic, we are all men of the world here, not innocent young flowers unused to the heat of “The Sun”, and similar organs, outside.
    There must be some conspiracy going on. The Gentlemen of the Press operating some Omerta code. Come clean! You probably know that bored Boro players (maybe those NOT on international duty) have been picked out of the River Tees late at night, having attempted to swim under the Transporter to break the record time for the return trip to Port Clarence.
    Maybe a late night party at a local drinking club, where senior players held a competition to see who could throw a selection of junior players the farthest (my money would be on the goalies to win that one). Or lewd “banter” towards female serving staff at a local trattoria?
    It could even be a secret tea-drinking clique that has taken to meeting in the early afternoons. Maybe someone breaking out the Russian Caravan tea, or a Formosa Oolong – maybe a radical group of breakaway Broken Orange Pekoe fanatics amongst the playing staff, and you could let us know who is the fiend that always eats more than his fair share of Garibaldi’s or Ginger Snaps.
    There might be an undergound “Jane Austen Appreciation Society” amongst the development squad, and think of the conflict when they learn of the clandestine reading habits of those players who have taken delivery of a selection from the Richard and Judy Book Club. It would probably get very ugly. We need to know these things.
    Nothing very serious that international sportsmen would necessarily need to feel ashamed about, just youthful high spirits as some steam is let off. But we all know that YOU must know about it. So spill the beans….
    In these quiet times without a Boro game, think of the space you could fill. And if it might casue a problem with the club and damage future interviewing opportunities, the stream of revelations could always come from Teesside Tommy. Nobody would need to know TT’s real identity.
    Could be a winner!
    **AV writes: No really, nothing. I think all the players were glad of the break so they could get stuck into marathon sessions playing as themselves on the all new FIFA 12 game.
    That and mainlining nandos.

  2. Drop the Dead Donkey: Local football journos try to post stories despite local interference.
    The Likely Lads: Follow the exploits of Robbo and Reidy in Yarm.
    Hallo, Hallo: Dutch spin off from succesful comedy with an English Policeman torturing the Dutch language during German occupation.
    Carry on Physio: Follow the mishaps of the usual suspects at Crockcliffe.
    The Chuckle Brothers: Julio and Fabio as the hilarious midfield duo. To you. to me taken to a new level.

  3. “Doctor at Large” – medical capers abound in the treatment room at the infamous Crocklife Hall
    “The Krankies Klub” –wee Kranky GS really knows how to put the steel back into his klub aided by his motley collection of old chums and mis-fits, all made in Scotland from girders.
    “Southgate Goes Fourth” – hilariously ironic comedy as the generals far from the front line fail to lead the troops to glory, starring Steve Gibson as General Melchett, Keith Lamb as Captain Darling with Gareth “Wibble” Southgate on the front-line.
    “Don’t Wait Up” – AV and his troupe of erudite bloggers find 101 ways to convince themselves to stay up to watch extensive highlights of the Boro late every Saturday night , always to be out-smarted and ultimately let down by their old Auntie Beeb.

  4. Some belters in there, cheared me up no end this morning. Anyway here’s my cack handed attempts.
    In Sickness and in Health –
    Alen Boksic throws the note from his Mum out the window and plays every game. Hilarity ensues.
    Phoenix Nights –
    Far fetched comedy in which a small town in Yorkshire’s football team stage staggering comebacks in the Uefa Cup. Relegation ensues
    Waiting For Goals –
    Residents of the Riverside retirement home look for alternative entertainment as they wait for Goals. Death ensues.
    I’m Alan Miller –
    Alan hosts a talk radio show where he reveals hilarious anecdotes of his career. Highlights include Viv Anderson, a soiled shoe, a ruined bet and Paul Merson. OFCOM investigation ensues.

  5. MacAdder?
    Mmmmm! In the old message board days I posted a series of stories of Steve McBlackadder and Bill Baldrick. (It was during the infamous season where we kept losing 1-0 away from home)
    Is Andrew Haslam infringing copyright? Can he take a weekly internet series and turn it into a TV sitcom?
    AV , can you get the legal eagles on to it?
    Gates Mother’s Did Have ‘Im –
    Gate stars as the hapless son married to the patient Alison.
    It Ain’t Half Hot Mum –
    Sergeant Strachan tries to get a motley mix to be proper footballers in foreign parts.

  6. Keeping Up Appearances –
    slapstick Boro bromance starring Didier Digard and Kevin Thomson.
    Men Behaving Badly –
    Merson, Gascoigne and Stamp set out on yet another hilarious, adolescent romp.
    Are You Being Served? –
    Kris Boyd attempts to run the channels with hilarious consequences.
    Bottom –
    Embarrassing Bodies inspired sitcom featuring JFH’s amazing large posterior.
    Gimme Gimme Gimme –
    Mido looks back at a career of pies and contracts in this semi-autobiographical football frolic.

  7. Entourage –
    Homoerotic travel show with Fabrizio Ravanelli and friends.
    Kavanagh QC –
    working class barrister Graham Kavanagh faces his toughest challenge yet as he switches to defence.
    The IT Crowd –
    Joe Bennett and Justin Hoyte interact with fans online with much confusion and hilarity.

  8. Keeping Up Appearances –
    A light-hearted look at how a certain individual (insert your choice of scapegoat here) manages to continue to get a game week after week despite everything.

  9. Agony!
    – a typical Boro supporters neurotic battle to juggle job and family life while balancing the competing foam-handed/bed-wetting parts of their brain as results lurch from week to week. (Starring Ali Brownlee and Bernie Slaven)
    Brass –
    set in the 30s, can the downtrodden ex-steelworkers playing for cash strapped Utterley FC succeed in their quest for promotion despite the ruthless cost-cutting of their evil rich benefactor?

  10. AV, on a different note, and as it’s in the news elsewhere, would be curious to hear your take on the England rugby team’s disastrous World Cup.
    **AV writes: I know very little about egg-chasing but it has been interesting to see the off the pitch shenannigans viewed through a certain prism of old school class by the big papers. There is some very good written analysis.
    Clearly what would be shocking debauchery and unacceptable breaches of discipline demandning summary execution by a hastily assembled Heathrow lynch mob in football are seen as just routine high-spirits and public school steam letting in rugby.
    (See also the differing reactions to the thuggery and hooliganism of the Etonian set in the Bullingdon Club as opposed to that of feral urban youth.)
    The guarded initial reaction to the earlier incidents was pragmatic and predecated on the future results (in football it would be instant hysteria and demands) and the outcome will be a behind closed doors review. All very self-contained and with very little apparent focussed public pressure.
    Preparation was clearly wrong. I don’t know enough about the tactical nuances and relative strengths of other nations to comment with any confidence on whether results were a self inflicted disaster or within expected parameters given the opposition.
    But there is obviously institutional chaos at the RFU with no chief executive, no clear leadership and the board paralysed. There seems confusion over the management structure and the role of other powers within the game and there is a growing political and financial tension and imbalance between club and country.
    Perhaps people should be looking at those areas rather than episodes of beery laddish ferry jumping.
    But as I say, I’m not really qualified to comment.

  11. “Never Mind the Quality, Feel the Width”
    – fun and frivolity as left leaning wide boys Downing and Johnston get switched out right.
    “The Last of the Summer Wine” –
    Spraggo and Craggs with Foggo re-living their youth over chips with scraps down at the Boro Fish Bar.
    “I’m Sorry I Haven’t a Clue”
    – Alfie Alves has us in stitches pretending he knows how to score goals.

  12. Only Fools and Horses starring Del Boy Merson and Ray Rodney Parlour, two crafty cockneys if there ever was.
    btw AV, any idea who the trialist was that scored two for Boro in yesterday’s development game at Blackburn?

  13. Sorry Ian, totally unintentional plagiarism I assure you.
    Or, turning it on its head, you’re attempting to steal credit for my idea. See you in court!

  14. An Idiot Abroad –
    Phil Stamp goes on holiday to Libya and ends up between the sticks. Hilarity ensues.
    **AV writes: hey, we’re doing sit-coms, not documentaries!

  15. “Love Thy Neighbour” – a light hearted look at the Mackems from Stockton and their smog-bound aspirations to be welcomed in the Riverside
    “Let Them Eat Cake” – ….try stopping me quipped leading man Mido to the Radio Times. “But not if I can help it” chipped in his Parmo eating antipodean co-Star Viduka.

  16. The Fast Show – A black comedy charting the rapid demise of a small town club, from the brink of European glory into the abyss of relegation. But will there be a twist in the tale?
    Park Enders – The story of how one man from a small town housing estate rescues the club he loves from extinction. (Prequel to The Fast Show)

  17. “Not the Nine O’Clock News” –
    this week following the nation’s favourite team Middlesbrough as they hope to set a new all time record start to the season, including a hilarious sketch parodying the Look North team preparing their in-depth special “Down by the Riverside”
    “The Lion’s Den” – more would be promotion hopefuls begging for goals come to Roary’s domain, but get sent packing empty-handed

  18. So Liverpool want individual negotiations over TV rights at the same time as Serie A want to go back to collective negotiations.
    I dont like the money that football is awash with. The thought of the big boys getting an even bigger slice of the cake is appalling.
    Those outside the top six would be decimated and where would that leave those down the pyramid.
    At the moment we have nineteen clubs set against it, bad as the current deal is lets hope they dont waver – though why 14 premiership turkeys would vote for Christmas is difficult to see.
    **AV writes: So this is “The Money Programme” then?
    The turkeys all voted for the PL in the first place and for every subsequent Christmas plumping of the fat cats slice since then. They all believe the crumbs on the top table are far more lucrative and safer than being cast adrift.

  19. Blue Peter –
    Davenport is down on his heels and out of cash so dons the liedderhosen and with a greying moustache starts a career as a porn star. One for the girls!
    Magpie –
    a weekly ‘look geordie’ local BBC footy show which will cover all the action from the big three. A black and white TV is recommended.

  20. Ian: 20% of the royalties are yours but I retain 100% of the rights from overseas TV deals. Done and we’ll say no more about it.
    On the Liverpool front, I’m interested whether there is a current generation of glory-supporting Reds. When I was at school, everyone who wasn’t a Boro fan “supported” Liverpool or United.
    While obviously the numbers of United fans among today’s youth will be the same or greater, I’d be interested to know how many plastic Reds there still are on Teesside and in equivalent areas.
    There seemed to be quite a few last time we played them at the Riverside, as ever, but presumably the majority of them are in their 30s (and older) now?
    I can only hope their numbers are dwindling and continue to fall.
    **AV writes: Playground glory hunters come in demograpic waves.
    When I was a kid it was all Leeds around here. The Teesside Whites are all 45-55 now. Then Liverpool (30-45). Then Man Utd (15-35) with an overlap of Chelsea (10-16).
    Now the FIFA/Pro Evo and Sky Sports generation have gone beyond that. Now when you see a school age football coaching course locally the shirt count is dominated by Barcelona ahead of Boro, then Man U then Chelsea/England with Liverpool a minimal presence. Plus the obligatory fat lad in stripes (of either colour).

  21. Ian Gill reflecting on Premier League turkeys voting for Christmas and Liverpool’s latest selfless notion made me think of an old YTV quiz show:
    “Winner Takes All” –
    cheeky scouser Jimmy Tarbuck gets right behind his local team’s efforts to stop anyone else getting a slice of the pie

  22. “A Very Peculiar Practice” –
    A pint-sized Scottish-coach aims to bring back the good times at the Riverside by using old-fashioned training methods and getting rid of all the young players…with hilarious results.

  23. Play Your Cards Right –
    A new game show where visually impaired referees and their assistants compete to decide when to issue red and yellow cards and who to issue them to.
    One Man and His Dog –
    A documentary on the contestants of the above game show.

  24. AV, this is more difficult for me – a foreigner.
    “Dad’s Army”
    A reality series of old men gathering for beano and Boro banter in the Navvy before a match. Of course there is one younger exception – but he is allergic to tricky trees.
    A 4-1 win on Saturday? Up the Boro!

  25. Auf Wiedersehen Pet –
    Former Boro mdfielder and BBC Tees expert summeriser Gary Gill says goodbye to Teesside to undertake scouting duties on foreign shores with unknown results. But how will friend and Boro cheerleader Ali Brownlie cope without him?

  26. Woe of woes, Shrek is banned for three matches at the 2012 Euros. That could be a huge saving for the FA because they may be able to fly home after the group stages rather than waste everyones time in the quarter final stage.
    Having seem the challenge it is no great surprise and I am not going to castigate the player, we have enough at the Boro who transgressed the lines over the years.
    At least we have the proud title of the most popular dismissed player in football history when Morrison up ended the Portuguese winker at Old Trafford in the cup.
    See I managed to get a bit of Boro in to the sitcoms.
    PS Several posts have disappeared including the hit comedy Benidormanstown.

  27. The Young Ones: Cat, Glass Knees and co visit Yarm.
    Mock the Week: The BBC Tees phone in with things we would least expect to hear about an unbeaten side.
    Little Britain: I am the only supporter in the South Stand.
    Fawlty Towers: Basil Gibson and Manuel Gate ‘I know nothing!’ in hilarious hotel comedy. Also features Reiziger ‘I am from Barcelona’ plus Lambie makes a guest appearance as the hotel inspector.
    Monty Python: Featuring the striker is dead sketch and Gate starring as the lead inquisitor in the Spanish Inguisition. Special appearance by Dinsdale station.

  28. Alergic is right. I’m now waking up during a naps at work worrying about the game. If we had been scheduled to play them just three weeks ago, I think we would have won.
    Now I can’t see anything but a home win.
    But we have a home game first, I’ll worry my way through that one first

  29. Harsh, Jarkko, harsh. I like the suggestion of the 4-1 win though.
    Now, there’s a thought. Would a 2-0 win at home be better than a 4-1 win, or not? A two goal safety margin, another clean sheet, versus the chance for several players to get goals, or one player to go beserk and really tear the opposing defence to shreds whilst our defence is breached.
    Which brings me to another “pundit’s phrase”: you know the one: “2-0, the most dangerous score in football…” Always makes me chuckle. I mean, if you were a manager you’d prefer to be 2-0 up than 0-7 down, wouldn’t you? It’s obvious which would be the more dangerous for a manager’s job prospects.

  30. Going for a Song
    The Price is Right
    Flog It (insert your fav Boro sales here)
    Cash in the Attic
    Bargain Hunt (Where we are now).

  31. Better a sit-com than the tragedy we were witnessing under the previous regime.
    It was embarrassing: you started off with high hopes only to have them dashed, the charismatic leader we were expected to follow turned out to have lost touch with reality, then came the crisis that the audience could see but the dramattis personae could not*.
    *(from that point, sounds more like a pantomime!)
    There was an inevitabilty as the actors steamed straight ahead, unable to alter their course despite the rocks looming in their path. Resources were wasted, friends and supporters antagonised to the point of open revolt and the crash was only averted by someone shooting the captain as he struggled with the wheel in a storm. The idea he, and we, should take to drink and drugs was the last straw.
    So much better to be out of that nightmare, and to be smiling again at the pleasure football can bring. We’re not completely overcome by the fumes from the foam hands, but we have started to hope again.
    Charismatic leaders CAN achieve remarkable feats with the men under their command. The starting point is that the players have to have belief in the manager/leader, and the manager has to have faith in himself or the system which guides him.
    Think of Ernest Shackleton and his small band of men, after The Endurance became trapped in the ice in Antarctica, rowing 800 miles or so across the Southern Ocean and then crossing the frozen mountains of South Georgia to raise help to go to the rescue of the rest of his crew, shivering on Elephant Island. No lives lost despite a desperate situation. There is no substitute for leadership.

  32. I am surprised no-one has come up with it, but …
    Boyd in the (cack/Strach/black) Stuff –
    A not-quite-hilarious slice of absurdism: overweight and overpaid superstar does very little and then does it again… and again. Award-winning script by S. Beckett.
    Could also be called “Are You Being Served?”

  33. Forever Dormo –
    What is even more frightening is that the ship had already crashed, the captan dismissed and been refloated after makeshift repairs.
    The captain you mentioned was charged with limping home to the premiership port only to steer the ship into uncharted reefs.
    It was a bit like the chap breaking his shoulder in a road accident only for the ambulance to crash on the way to hospital and break his leg. I suppose Thommo must feel the same, a career spoilt by injury and he comes to Boro!
    Oddly both ships masters seem to have reinvented themselves.
    Maybe that is the same for us. On that profound(ish) note back to work.

  34. I’m very much looking forward to resuming our Championship campaign tomorrow, though sadly once again I’m unable to be in attendance.
    Millwall have really struggled so far this season and I’m sure they’ll come to the Riverside with a familiar plan: Defend, frustrate, counter.
    I’d like to see us set a high tempo from the off tomorrow and try to establish an early lead, thus allowing us to play to our own counter-attacking strength. I don’t see them coming back into it if we can get the first goal.

  35. As Andy R said – it’s good to get the ball out again!
    A win and a few goals – I would prefer 4-1 to 2-0 – is what’s required. M&S will notch tomorrow, I think.
    Unfortunately, I think it will be the lowest Riverside crowd this season, so far.
    Interesting that Mogga says we’re now back in the hunt for another striker. It’s only a couple of weeks ago that he was claiming we didn’t need another one. Maybe that’s the impact of three blanks in a row!

  36. Smogon –
    I hope Steve Cotterell will have a similar start as most new managers. They usually start with a couple of defeats if they make some changes. Hope he does not let the caretaker to handle first game. Anyway, a win tomorrow and a draw mid week will do nicely, thank you. Up the Boro!

  37. Andy R –
    I think we all want that but Mogga is treading a tricky line.
    So far we have been a counter attacking team bringing teams on to us.
    Teams eventually work out a way to play against you and the managers instructions will be to go out and quieten the crowd and see what happens, a point is no bad thing from the Riverside.
    Thats us now on to how Millwall will play. Joking, nearly.
    Mogga has got us playing a certain way, to some extent it is the old adage of you start with one point, keep it that way.
    Tomorrow Southampton come to Derby and my colleagues dont know how it will go nor will they predict a score. Maybe yet another chance to go top.
    Will Mogga persist in 352 with Hoyte right and Bennett left as wing backs? Will he bring McManus back into the three and push McMahon forward? Will he play Robbo, Rolls Rhys (after his travels) and Bailey as a central three?
    Will he go 4-4-2 and in that case who will play on the flanks, Robbo and Arca would not be the quickest pairing ever in a Boro shirt. My views of Robbo on the right do not need repeating
    Frankly I havent a clue, I just hope they turn on a performance for the home fans, all this talk of great football away from the Riverside will not encourage people to turn up at home.
    My next match is at the place by the Trent, lets be top.

  38. Good piece on Boro and Mowbray on the Football League show.
    Talked about the fact we were not scoring many but were not conceding many either and that is key to getting out this league.
    Covered the fact teams will park the bus at the Riverside and we lacked pace.
    Peter Beagrie mentined the spine of the team was essentially local players and that was why we were succesful because they had played together.
    Being sad I looked at the matchday squads of the early season games against Reading under GS1, GS2 and Mogga.
    2009/10 GS1 had eight locals in his squad.
    2010/11 GS2 had five.
    2011/12 Mogga had three.
    Part of the decline in numbers were the sales of Jones, Johnson and Wheater.
    Another part was played by injuries to the likes of Williams and Bates in the early squads, Steele and Bennett for Mogga’s team.
    It is still the same suspects – McMahon, Williams, Bates. who feature the most.
    Bennett played at Reading for Gate and he looked rawer than raw. Steele was in goal at Reading under Strachan and Smallwood on the bench. Bennett and Steele would have played under Mogga at Reading.
    What does this tell us? Players were sold to reduce the debt, the club continues to play the kids no matter the manager.
    Points to Mogga stopping the slide. Didnt need all the guff from me to tell you that.

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